Homebuyers vote noise to be the biggest turn off

Warren Lewis
19th May 2017
"Ultimately, noise is a factor that people either can or can’t live with"

New research from has revealed that homebuyers take noise pollution very seriously when it comes to buying their dream home.

According to a recent survey, 92% of homeowners say noise levels from a nearby pub would influence their decision on buying their dream home, with 55% saying they definitely wouldn’t buy it.
Other noise sources that homeowners say would deter them completely from buying their dream property include airports (54%), motorways (48%) an airport flight path (45%), electricity pylons (40%) and a train mainline (36%). 38% of homeowners also say noise levels from an A-road would make them reconsider the purchase.
Homeowners over 55-years-old were the most likely to opt out of buying their dream property in every category, while under 35-year-olds saw noise as less of an influence when it comes to buying. This group ranked bottom in all but two categories: airports (50%) and restaurants (32%).

Stephen Jury, Spokesperson for Plentific, commented: “Finding your dream home for your budget can be tricky, but our research highlights that certain noise levels can make or break the decision to buy.
The reality is that people worry about noise; if you look at demand and prices for homes that will potentially be affected by HS2, new flight paths or motorway developments, there's inevitably a negative impact. While certain home improvements and renovation work can soften the impact of noise, you still have to be willing to make a compromise on the quality of your home life. Ultimately, noise is a factor that people either can or can’t live with.”

Social butterflies may think living in close proximity to a bar, pub or nightclub would be a good idea. However, when it comes to buying a dream home, a staggering 55% of homebuyers said that the noise from one of these hangouts would lead them to abandon their purchase. Almost half of 18 to 34-year-olds (45%) admitted they wouldn’t purchase a property impacted by this kind of noise.

As well as noise levels putting off buyers, other factors that come with busy bars, pubs or nightclubs could potentially be a turn off when it comes to living near these establishments. Anti-social behaviour from customers, as well as excess litter, could also contribute to an uncomfortable environment and affect the homebuyer’s decision to purchase their dream property.
With noise levels from bars, pubs and clubs proving the biggest turn off for homeowners when it comes to buying their dream home, paying for noise reduction methods could be a real game changer for sellers. Acoustic curtains are perfect for these noise issues, as they are likely to be used in the late evening and at night. Sound blocking doors could be another option to help remove the risk of noise affecting your home.

Motorways were among the top influencers when it comes to buying a dream home (92%), with almost half of homebuyers saying they definitely wouldn’t purchase their dream home due to resulting noise levels (48%). Just 8% of homebuyers said motorways wouldn’t influence their decision.
If you’re part of the 8% who would be willing to buy near a motorway, double glazing or secondary double glazing can make a big difference when it comes to reducing noise levels. A qualified trade professional can help to install and replace glass window panels to ensure maximum protection from traffic noise.

Airports were a close second on the list of noise pollutants that would affect a homebuyers’s decision to purchase their dream property, with 91% saying they would be influenced and over half (54%) saying noise levels from an airport would put them off completely. Only 9% of homebuyers said they would look beyond the noise levels and purchase the property of their dreams even if it was near an airport.
While completely blocking out noise from an airport may be impossible, there are some nifty tricks that can help soften the blow. Acoustic ceiling panels are one option, as is insulation in your walls to help block out the sounds of planes taking off and landing. A builder or structural engineer will be able to advise you on the most effective soundproofing methods for your walls and ceilings.

Airport flight paths also proved to be a deal breaker when it comes to buying a dream home, with 45% of homebuyers saying the noise levels would put them off completely. 30% of homebuyers said they would reconsider buying, while 15% said that they would be willing to offer a lower price for an affected property. With the potential expansion to Heathrow, homebuyers would be wise to look at the new flight path before committing to a new home purchase.
While noise levels from airport flight paths may vary depending on the location of the property within the path, there are many effective home improvements which can reduce the resulting disruption. Carpeting is effective at absorbing excess noise, as well as feeling plush and adding an extra layer of comfort to your home. Ensure that you book a qualified trade professional to lay your carpeting, as any gaps or wonky edges could render your efforts moot

Nearby transport links are often a must-have for homebuyers, providing easy access to work, entertainment and leisure. However, Plentific’s research shows that noise levels from a train mainline would affect 88% of homebuyers when it comes to buying their dream property.
Disruption from a train mainline can also come in the form of physical vibrations, which can create an uncomfortable living environment. For those not keen on expensive solutions, acoustic art could be the answer. Special boards designed to absorb excess sound and vibrations can be hung on walls to reduce the disruption while also adding decoration to the home.

Eating out for dinner every now and then might seem like a nice idea, but living next to a noisy restaurant is certainly not every homebuyers’s cup of tea. In fact, 80% of homebuyers said noise levels from restaurants would influence their decision to purchase a property. When it came to restaurant noise, 32% of homebuyers said it would put them off buying completely, while 31% would reconsider their purchase and 16% would reconsider but feel comfortable with offering a lower price.
If your dream property comes with a garden, this can be optimised to help reduce noise levels from restaurants. Bamboo can be a great sound blocker, and it will also mask excess noise when swishing in the breeze. Other plants and trees can also work well to reduce sounds from nearby restaurants. Make sure to consult a qualified gardener before you start planting, so that you can be sure your helpful plants will also be able to thrive in your garden.

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